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The Ugly Truth: An Examination Of Stereotypes In Media

2091 words - 8 pages

The Ugly Truth, a film which was released in 2009, displays many particular stereotypes and gender issues which we find within American society. Gender is made up of socially constructed ideas which are reinforced by society in regards to what it means to be masculine or feminine. We first learn gender from our parents; however they too had to first learn it from their families and society. Within the American society, the media takes on a large role in creating gender norms. The media is made up of films, magazines, television programs, and news papers. The Ugly Truth, although a funny film, perpetuates these stereotypes and ideas of gender provided by our society.
Gerard Butler and Katherine Heigl, are two very famous stars who represent America’s acting industry as two of the most highly regarded feminine and masculine actors. Both are thought to represent femininity and masculinity and very. It comes as no surprise that these two characters were chosen to play the parts of Abby and Michael within The Ugly Truth. The Ugly Truth displays a lot of stereotypes of men and women or what is expected to be masculine and feminine. According to Gendered Live: Communication, Gender, and Culture by Julia Wood, “A stereotype is a generalization about an entire class of phenomena based on some knowledge of some members of the class” (Wood, 2011, 122). Stereotypes can cause a lot of problems in society if individuals don’t fit the particular mold or idea of what it means to be feminine or masculine. Within The Ugly Truth, the first stereotype which arises is that women in powerful roles cannot have a relationship (Luketic, 2009). As an example, this particular stereotype causes a large amount of trouble for Abby when she takes to heart the idea that by being successful she will never have a successful relationship. This idea perpetuates this stereotype into a social issue and makes it into a socially accepts idea of women not being acceptable for highly powerful position. Stereotypes can be very damaging to the individuals that they effect and by placing stereotypes within films we cause them to be widely accepted within our society.
The Ugly Truth uses very distinct stereotypes of how the male gender should act and these stereotypes could be very damaging if adopted by society and accepted as normal ways to act. The very first stereotype of the male gender that the viewer encounters of the film is of Mike being very disrespectful towards women on his late night television show (Luketic, 2009). When this idea is perpetuated in the media, young people often pick up on it subtly without often realizing it. By providing an incident like this within the movie, the film industry is making it clear to society that it’s okay for women to be disrespected. Wood states, “Language reflects cultural values and is a powerful influence on our perceptions. Despite our process in reducing sexism, our language continues to devalue females and femininity by...

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